How blogging and gaming feed each other

In the short time since i started blogging regularly, big things happened. First of all, i didn’t expect to be connecting quite so fast as it happened now. Even when i restarted writing more regularly in the end of 2014, after the news broke that Massively would shut down, i doubled down on that. My goal right now is to publish something every day, although i have to confess that this might not be the best of ideas- see yesterday’s post for reasons why. While i liked the topic and stand by the argument, i had to hurry somewhat and the post developed from one topic to the other. And now it’s quite a mess, but that’s ok.

I started following more blogs via WordPress and Twitter gave me new blogs to see, as well. Furthermore, i wasn’t alone in this line of thinking- Ironweakness’ Blog exists because of the impending shutdown (and, reading it, one has to wonder why he didn’t start earlier). Right now my following of blogs is a mess- some of them are only in the WordPress reader i don’t use, some of them are only on Twitter and despite the fact that this is an MMO-exclusive account the stream runs by very fast. And then there’s Feedly, where i do read and i’m slowly migrating everyone over there.

So, the social connecting thing works in this regard. I’ll also have to thank many of the “real bloggers” for that. You really visit my blog from time to time, comment, like, write posts answering some of the posts i made or even link to me. This is a great experience, and i’d really like to thank you for being such an inclusive breed of gamers!

Playing and Writing

Of course, these connections make me want to write even more. But then there’s another thing: i found that my writing and gaming feed each other. Sometimes i’d think about a topic for a post and realize that i should go and play something, focussing the attention during the session on the topic i want to write about. And sometimes it’s the other way round- i play something and a topic opens up.

As someone who is, sometimes literally, playing a different game each day, this connection between writing and playing has given me a focus i didn’t achieve before. Yes, i’d resolve myself to play “just this one” MMO for some time, but it never lasts- and why should it? When you don’t have strong social ties in a game and are playing solo, mostly, why should you be “faithful” to one or two games? There are reasons, of course. Social ties, for instance, grow while staying in one game- it’s more difficult if you switch every other week.

Rift Dragon
I wanted to stay in Rift until ArcheAge released. Didn’t quite work out.

But now? I want to write about things- and i want to experience things in the games. I also found out that i look at games differently- even when not thinking about making something a topic, i feel like i experience these games more intense. Right now, inspired also by comments here and some blog posts in other places, there are a few quite focussed projects i’d like to take on. We’ll see how it goes, because time is still limited.

Lord of the Rings

As i’ve mentioned, i fear a little bit for Lotro. I’m not overly optimistic that it’ll last longer than 2017. I might be wrong here, and i do hope i am, but when the gates close on this one, we’ll lose access to the best realized Middle Earth in MMOs and maybe games in general. I don’t like that to happen. I planned to visit Vanguard when i had a “bad feeling” about it in the beginning of last year only to sadly be right and have the world yanked from us. When you don’t have lots of time to play, a project like “visiting the world” can take months, even years. So when i begin this now, there might be a chance that i’ll get to see the Middle Earth of Lotro before it shuts down.

Next up: the Chetwood and Staddle
Next up: the Chetwood and Staddle

My plan here is quite like something a tourist guide writer would do- see the places, know some things about them (i’m not going to graduate in Middleearthology) and present them here.

Final Fantasy XIV

Deidra_aetheryte

This is a game where a second, third or fourth look on crafting and economy is going to be interesting. I’ve read several times now that there’s kind of a barrier in the mid-30-levels, and i’m quite interested to see how it goes. I’ve experienced similar things, mostly in Lotro, where i always seemed to be stuck in the mid-30s.

So it’s going to be crafting/economy for Final Fantasy XIV, but also general gameplay experience. I guess i’ll continue to cover this for all the games i play, but if the last two weeks are any indication, it seems as though FF14 is my favourite game, for now. And it should be – it is good, after all, and i’d like to be ready for Heavensward without hurrying along.

Everquest 2

Not much focus here. I also stopped playing it outside of my guild group, because my guild group character progresses much faster than my other character and i’ll transfer her over to Antonia Bayle when the guild project is over. But there’s something about EQ2 that’s really great- and from time to time, you’ll read about how it has so many features, how it is almost a sandbox in themepark’s clothing- i’d like to flesh that out a bit and look at the different features.

Socializing

This has been a topic here for quite some time- how to connect to other players- what can we, as players, do to make our gameplay experience more social? What can developers do? I’d like to take a look into that and also want to make my personal gameplay experience more social. You’d like to do that, as well? Goody, just head on over to Group up and give me a /tell.

So this is it- in the two months since i restarted blogging here i found that writing enhances gameplay experience, and you’ll get to know/talk to/discuss with great, like minded people…or not so like-minded. Doesn’t matter as long as discussion is civil.

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8 thoughts on “How blogging and gaming feed each other

  1. I identify with this post a lot. Blogging about gaming news often gets me in the mood to go back to a game I’ve maybe left on shelf – it certainly did for LOTRO only a couple of weeks ago and I’m really enjoying it again for the first time since the big skill revamp.

    Reading about others playing FFXIV makes me want to dive back into that game also but it’s a bigger time sync than I can cope with at the moment.

    I have the same two-way link between blogging and playing, sometimes I choose to play a game specifically to get some nice screenshots as background for a post I’ve thought up. Other times I am inspired at random to write something because of a gaming session – there’s a real mix of pre-planned and improv posts.

    1. It’s an interesting thing to observe, though. I started to feel this synergy only recently, although i wrote often in the beginnings of this blog, as well. I don’t know why, but right now it just works. I still have to find the time to play, of course, but there are projects in some places i’d really like to do. Maybe it’s because of the comments and discussion, as well. Before, i was pretty isolated, now there are people bringing ideas, as well…and i do like it.

      I fall into the “trap” of checking out “old” games often, as well. Whenever someone writes about something i might enjoy and i can feel his/her enjoyment in the post, i’m game. Yesterday there was this shaman class column on Blizzardwatch- http://blizzardwatch.com/2015/02/12/totem-talk-enhancement-and-the-last-true-hybrid/ and boy, did i enjoy my Druid in the early days and levels, and it’s really tempting me to take a look and see if this would be something i’d enjoy from time to time, as well.

      But, there’s FF XIV. And you’re right- it’s a huge time sink, it has some really grindy spots, but i think there’s no need to hurry (well, actually, Heavensward might be one, but i won’t let it hunt me) and the options during each session are vast.

  2. I’ve had a tumultuous relationship with EQ2. It wasn’t my first MMO, that title is bestowed to its older brother. However, it was the first MMO that clicked for me (much like WoW did for mostly everyone on the planet) and I spent a couple of years playing it obsessively (go look at my 2007 archive). Eventually though I grew tired of it, and played other games. I still go back every so often to check out what’s new, it’s just sad that it doesn’t have much of a community anymore, so you can’t experience the MMO-ness of PUGs (dungeon/raids) and it doesn’t have the living world feeling anymore. It’s sad because I loved it so.

    1. I’ve had to try it four or five times before it clicked. And the optimization patch at the end of last year did its part in growing my enjoyment. Of course i agree, it’s not much of a living world anymore, i guess that is the prize you pay for being late to a quite “linear” themepark. The only option is to find an active guild and see if the people playing like joining you in some of the group adventures. Or, you know, one can explore these with a mercenary. My guess is that later zones feel more alive again, but i might be wrong, since i really don’t know about the games’ population.

  3. Great post, and thank you for the compliment. What you are saying definitley resonates with me, I’m also discovering a beneficial relationship between my writing and gaming, the most notable being that it has helped me be more specific with my gaming time. Because I’m writing I’m playing less and as a result I have to really think about what I want to accomplish.

    I also pay attention more because who knows what may inspire a topic? I Already have about 3 Elder Scrolls Online posts on the docket and each one has me engaging the game more purposefully.

  4. I’m also a bit like this: sometimes I go and game because I want to write about something and the other way around the screenshots I take in-game sometimes inspire me to write posts. Although I think I might play a bit less when I really get caught up in blogging because I need to create screenshots for my posts!

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